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Opinion: Jay Ashcroft’s Entire Campaign is Based on a Lie

As a Professional Engineer, I am compelled to speak out against Jay Ashcroft’s persistent false claims about being an “Engineer.” The integrity and trustworthiness of the Engineering profession are paramount, and Jay Ashcroft’s lies undermine both.

Missouri law is unequivocal about who may call themselves an Engineer. This distinction is vital because Engineers are responsible for designing and constructing bridges, skyscrapers and other infrastructure essential to public safety.

Many people don’t realize it, but the Engineering profession is actually in Missouri’s Constitution. You can look up Chapter 327, which includes  Architects, Professional Engineers, Professional Land Surveyors and Professional Landscape Architects. These skilled professions are in the Constitution because those jobs have an impact on the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Missouri. If someone falsely claims to be an Engineer, as Jay Ashcroft has repeatedly done, it is a direct violation of our Constitution. Jay Ashcroft swore an oath to uphold the Missouri Constitution, and he violates that oath every time he falsely claims to be an Engineer.

Professional Engineers are held to high standards of academic achievement, professional accomplishment and specific state certification. These standards are not merely bureaucratic checkmarks, they are crucial for ensuring public safety. When any individual, much less a politician, falsely claims to be an Engineer, they erode public trust and jeopardize the safety of the critical infrastructure that Engineers who have actually earned the title, design and build.

Jay Ashcroft’s real background reveals the truth: he holds a degree in Engineering Management and is only certified as an “Engineering Intern.” By Missouri law, this does not qualify him as an Engineer. Jay Ashcroft’s claims are not just a matter of political rhetoric; they have real legal consequences. Missouri Revised Statutes 327.076.1 clearly state that falsely identifying oneself as a Professional Engineer is subject to criminal prosecution and significant fines. This law exists to protect public safety by ensuring that only qualified individuals can hold the title of Engineer.

I’m no Pollyanna when it comes to politics. I understand it’s not unusual for people running for office to exaggerate or inflate a number or two. But what Jay Ashcroft has done is much worse. His claim, plastered on the front page of his website, “I’m an engineer,” is a blatant lie. And he doesn’t stop with only lying about his biography and background. Jay Ashcroft has based his entire campaign on this lie.

Jay Ashcroft’s campaign theme “Engineering A Stronger Missouri,” and his slogan “Politicians Fix Blame, Engineers Fix Problems,” are as empty as they are untruthful.

Jay Ashcroft has used Engineering terminology and imagery everywhere, including his -so-called “Red Print” vision, and even t-shirts and mugs, which are all attempts to deceive voters into believing he has qualifications he does not possess. He is not a Professional Engineer, and could not sign off on any official blueprints. I would not trust, and no Missourian should trust, any infrastructure project he may have touched.  I would also not want to drive a road, cross a bridge or enter a building that Jay Ashcroft, or anyone else falsely claiming to be an Engineer, had anything to do with.

Professional Engineers do not take kindly to individuals hijacking our hard-earned title for political gain. Jay Ashcroft’s dishonesty not only smears the engineering profession but also endangers the public and the public trust for our occupation. As an Engineer, I find his actions deeply troubling. Jay Ashcroft is not an Engineer.